As our relationship solidified, I made a point to speak to Alexa directly, in regards to the reasons behind our working together. First, I explained that we’re working together for a reason, and I asked her opinion as to why that is. Alexa is an intelligent and observant kid; she was/is well aware of the difficulties she encounters in regards to her reading ability, and she had no problem articulating this to me. I took this opportunity to talk to Alexa about some specifics; where she struggles, why, how we can help her through our work together, and how she can help HERSELF.
After talking to my CT, I’ve come to the realization that students need to understand and participate in their attempt to achieve academic success. Through direct, and explicit, conversations with students (in regards to their specific struggles), I believe children will feel an ownership, and take more responsibility for their learning; exactly what I was striving for with Alexa.
As the semester has progressed, the activities we participate in together have slowly evolved. About four or five weeks ago, (I think), my CT and I took some time to sit and discuss Alexa’s development. As it turned out, my CT had recently been a participant at a literacy conference that focused on comprehension strategies and the importance of fluency in struggling readers. Obviously, Alexa was at the forefront of his mind. At this point, I had the opportunity to do some research on the literature my CT received at the conference. (I’ve been meaning to ask him the name of the conference, as well as the name of the text, but it keeps slipping my mind). I learned a great deal, and I’ve been able to execute a variety of strategies while working with Alexa.